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Heather Jeffcoat at Buzzfeed
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things you should have been taught in sex ed
Cassandra Corrado / Via giphy.com
Buzzfeed author Lara Parker penned a highly informative article on all types of things you should have been taught in sex ed, and she reached out to Heather Jeffcoat for her advice on how to deal with issues of painful sex and related concerns. Here is a brief synopsis, with a link to the full article below.

Things You Should Have Been Taught in Sex Ed

Here's Some Sex Education You Actually Need, Including How Much Porn Is Too Much and Whether You Really Need to Pee After Sex

Let's just say there's a lot that's not always covered in sex ed.

Sometimes the sex education we learn around the world isn't, well, that educational. So we've spoken to sex educators, doctors, and medical experts of all kinds to compile some information we think everyone should have access to. This list is not exhaustive, and will probably always need adding onto, so feel free to let us know what you may still be curious about at the end!

19. Painful sex is not normal. And according to Dr. Heather Jeffcoat, pelvic floor physical therapist and author of the book, Sex Without Pain, sex is not supposed to hurt — ever! If it does, the reasons for this pain must be determined. She adds that, unfortunately, our society has normalized pain to the point where women are not seeking what could be critical care. So let's dive into reasons as to why this may be the case.

Treatments that can not only lead them to a painfree sex life, but that may also uncover medical conditions that could and should be treated in a timely manner. There is always a reason for painful sex, says Dr. Jeffcoat, but the challenge can be in finding a provider that will be the detective to help you find the reason and set up the right treatment plan. If a provider tells you "there is nothing wrong" and you are having pain, you need to switch providers. There are many reasons that sex could hurt for those with vaginas including but not limited to:

  1. vaginismus
  2. vulvodynia or vestibulodynia and subtypes of these (including clitordynia (or clitoral pain)
  3. endometriosis
  4. hymen abnormalities (such as an imperforate or septate hymen)
  5. vaginal septum
  6. local or systemic hormone deficiencies (typically estrogen and testosterone)
  7. Lichen sclerosus or lichens planus
  8. sexually transmitted infections
  9. Bartholin’s cyst
  10. Ovarian cyst
  11. other infections such as yeast or UTI
  12. vaginal ulcer
  13. post-operative pain due to scar tissue

The pain being "all in your head", by the way, is never a reason. If you are ever told this by a provider, you should immediately go find a new provider.

The above is just a brief excerpt from this detailed article. For 28 other things you should have been taught in sex ed, continue to the full article here.

What Our Patients Have to Say

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Testimonial by Alexandra B.

Heather is without exaggerating AMAZING! After years of trouble with a certain part of my body, in no time, she made everything change back to equilibrium and to what would be considered normal. She explains everything in detail and therefore gives you a better understanding of why things are the way they are, and how you can work towards turning things around. I would highly recommend Heather for any type of Physical Therapy. She has created her own "Method/Therapy" through years of studying (with some of the greatest practitioners), practice and breaking down the issues of her past patients, enabling her to fine tune her own system. I'm so thankful to have found her, and I'm especially grateful for the quick recovery I've achieved, after years of distress. If you cannot afford her, I recommend you purchase her book. Although it may not be Heather in person, it can still help you to get on the right path to recovery!

-- Alexandra B., 5/20/2015 via Yelp!

Testimonial by T.H.

I started seeing Heather in October 2014. For more than two years, I had been suffering from painful urinary tract infection type symptoms after my bartholins gland surgery which included constant burning and urinary frequency sensation that led to more and more painful intercourse. I had made multiple visits to internist, obgyn and urologist's offices, went through a range of treatment with UTI and bladder frequency medication that included antibiotics, vesicare, estrogen cream, but nothing worked.

Read more: Testimonial by T.H.

Testimonial by Rosanna R., age 35

Heather has affected my life in the MOST POSITIVE way and I am forever grateful. My husband refers to her as the "sex doctor" so you can only imagine how happy he is with my therapy outcome.

After the birth of my son I suffered from "Vaginismus", however, at the time I just thought I was broken. My "broken vagina" affected me physically but it was an emotional struggle as well. Many women in my life also suffered with pain from sex after their babies were born so I knew I wasn't alone. They told me they "just got used to it" but I couldn't see myself living that way.

Sex wasn't just painful, it was literally impossible - IT DIDNT FIT!

Read more: Testimonial by Rosanna R.,...

Testimonial by S.H., age 24

I just wanted to thank you for everything you've done for me for the past 19 months. I literally could not have reached my goals without you and your practice. You gave me the courage to keep moving forth with my treatment no matter how afraid and anxious I was. You were always there to answer questions and made this whole process so much easier than I expected it to be.

It's because of you that my marriage is on the right track, that I can get pregnant and that this part of my life is finally over. I really feel that Fusion Wellness is a team of people you can call family and are there to root for you and cheer you on until you reach your goals. There is nothing better than knowing I accomplished this with you guys by my side and as calmly and patiently as I needed. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for always being there and helping me reach my goals.

S.H., age 24

Testimonial by R.D., age 38

"I had a severe tear during childbirth that was not stitched together correctly and therefore healed poorly. Even after having a surgery a year later to remove the scar tissue, I was still having pain, and no one could explain why -- there was no overt 'reason' to explain the pain. I had tried other 'specialists' and even saw another physical therapist who had me do hip / leg stretches -- what a joke! I was about to give up and just 'live with it' until thankfully I kept searching online and found Heather.

Read more: Testimonial by R.D., age 38

Testimonial by Julie T.

Femina PT (née Fusion Wellness & Physical Therapy) has honestly changed my life. Before receiving treatment at Femina, I was going doctor to doctor to try and find the answer to my pelvic pain. It has taken me YEARS to find someone that can help fix this. It wasn't until my gynecologist recommended your clinic that I finally felt relief. My pelvic pain is almost gone, and granted I still have a lot more to work on with Laureen (my PT), my original problem is nearly cured. I am so grateful to her.

What is even better is she gave me practical exercises to do at home that were not tedious and provided instant (and lasting) relief. Although I mainly work with Laureen, my interaction with the owner (Heather) has been great. She is very generous, kind, and committed to her business.

It hurts to know there are women out there suffering who will never know or have the opportunity to work with women like Laureen and Heather because this issue is hardly talked about and this field is so rare. I hope more doctors and physical therapists see the value in this work and can relieve more woman of their pain.

-- Julie T., 12/4/16 via Yelp!

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